Meena Devi with her twin sons born Nov. 20 in Victoria General Hospital. Devi is the widow of Khushal Rana who died in hospital after an SUV struck him on Gorge Road on Oct. 18. (Photo submitted)

Police won’t charge driver in relation to death of Saanich chef

Investigators say the 25-year-old woman suffered an undisclosed medical event before her vehicle struck Khushal Rana

Saanich Police will not charge the woman, whose vehicle struck a Saanich man, who later died in hospital from his injuries, weeks before his now-widowed wife gave birth to twins.

Acting Sgt. Jereme Leslie said in a release police will not charge the woman for infractions under the B.C. Motor Vehicle Act, because all evidence leads “investigators to believe the driver suffered a medical event while driving.” The release did not describe the nature of the medical event that ultimately led to the death of the Khushal Rana, the 31-year-old man, who had arrived in the region just months earlier after emigrating from India less than four years ago.

He was walking to his job as a chef at Saanich’s Sizzling Tandoor location, when a vehicle struck him on Oct. 18 near the intersection Gorge Road West and Donald Street. The vehicle was travelling east on Gorge Road West, when it mounted the sidewalk, before striking Rana.

Ambulance crews carried the 31-year-old Rana — who had just attended the birthday party of his four-year-old son — to Victoria General Hospital with serious injuries. Rana succumbed to them three days later, despite intensive efforts by doctors, who actually amputated one of his legs.

Rana left behind a grieving widow, now charged with raising three sons, including twin boys born almost exactly one month after the death of their father.

Rana’s death shocked the Greater Victoria area, and inspired an extensive GoFundMe campaign led by his employer Sizzling Tandoor and others leaders in the Indo-Canadian community. According to the latest available information, the online campaign raised $ 128,705 for his three children and wife, who speaks little English and has few contacts in Canada. Other organizations and individuals have also donated cash and items for Rana’s surviving family.

Meena Devi, 27, gave birth to the twins Nov. 20 in Victoria General Hospital. Doctors delivered the boys by Cesarean section more than a week early to avoid a medical complication that they had monitored in one of the twins, said family friend Gurinder Bawa.

Rana also left behind his four-year-old son, Ankush.

Rana had moved to Canada less than four years ago. Devi and Ankush joined him in April of 2017.

Leslie said the decision not to charge the 25-year-old driver of the vehicle that struck Rana reflects the outcome of a “lengthy and comprehensive investigation” during which officers spoke with several people including the driver herself, witnesses, emergency services personnel, and hospital staff.

Analysts also collected evidence from both the scene and from the vehicle, said Leslie.

“Investigators also obtained medical documents in relation to the driver,” he said.

Leslie added that investigators have asked the Office of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles to review the medical fitness of the woman to drive.

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